The Three Triceratops Tuff

Stephen Shaskan. S&S/Beach Lane, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4424-4397-6
Shaskan doesn’t update the story of the Three Billy Goats Gruff so much as send it into the past, “sixty-eight million years ago,” to be exact. Food is scarce for Stanley, Rufus, and Bob Tuff, but they spy some lush vegetation on the other side of a valley. The only problem: “At the bottom of the valley stood a... tyrannosaurus rex!” Shaskan draws the dino midroar, an effect he visualizes using a giant red starburst that blasts across the spread (even the tiny mosquito flying by looks scared). As in the original, each triceratops tricks the T. rex into letting him pass, with the promise that a larger, tastier morsel will be coming along. Shaskan retains the chunky, weathered style of his debut, A Dog Is a Dog, which is well suited to this story’s punchy text and colossal personalities. The climactic showdown, however, is surprisingly static; Bob Tuff takes out his opponent with a “mighty blow” from his tail, but there’s no real sense of the movement behind the action that sends the T. rex hurtling into the distance. Ages 3–7. Agent: Teresa Kietlinski, the Prospect Agency. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/18/2013
Release date: 04/02/2013
Genre: Children's
Portable Document Format (PDF) - 32 pages - 978-1-4424-4398-3
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